Staatsolie announced last week that the first group of 30 students attended a ceremonial launch of an 18-month technical training programme.
The ‘Oil & Gas Kopprogramma’ at the Institute of Natural Sciences (NATIN) is being offered through a collaboration between Staatsolie, Suriname’s Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, NATIN, the Surinamese business community, and the international oil companies (IOCs) active in Suriname.
According to a Staatsolie release, its Chief Executive Officer, Annand Jagesar, and the President of Suriname, Chandrikapersad Santokhi, both emphasized the importance of training to help maximise the benefits citizens are to receive from the offshore oil and gas industry.
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Classes start this week, with the group consisting of NATIN graduates in mechanical, electrical and process engineering. The course focus on the development of knowledge and skills required to work in the oil and gas industry and related sectors.
The ‘Oil & Gas Kopprogramma’ is set to last a year and a half and is divided into three six-month phases. The final phase will be an internship.
Staatsolie and its partners are spearheading the formation of an oil and gas stream at NATIN. Staatsolie and the IOCs have also provided the equipment for the practical lessons. The intention is that after approximately three years, the program will be integrated into the regular four-year NATIN program. The upgrade project will further upgrade infrastructure and the organisation so that it is more focused on the needs of the business community. Ultimately, NATIN will have to develop into a world class secondary vocational education institute in Suriname and the region, Staatsolie said.
Several oil discoveries have been made offshore Suriname in recent years, with most concentrated in Block 58 by its western border. TotalEnergies, the operator, is mulling the first development.